What is a family physician?A family physician’s practice provides the majority of healthcare you will seek out in your lifetime. Such a practice does not specialize in particular ages or genders (such as a pediatrician or OB/GYN) but instead provides care to people of any age or background. A family physician is trained in all areas of medicine, and is able to diagnose and treat many illnesses. If your condition requires a medical specialist, your family physician will facilitate the transfer of your care.
Your family physician will typically have a doctorate degree in medicine or osteopathic medicine coupled with three years of medical residency. As a family physician’s training entails all areas of medicine, their residency could include any number of specialized medical training programs like psychiatry, sports medicine, women’s health, and more. As their training runs the gamut of medical fields, you will generally find a family physician in small, private practices in communities far and wide.
A highly tangible benefit of regular visits to your family physician is lower cost of care. With health insurance an ongoing issue for millions of Americans from a financial standpoint, maintaining a regular schedule to visit your family physician will improve your health and aid in cutting down on your healthcare costs.
The more intangible benefit of having a family physician or doctor is their continued relationship with you and your family. It is for this reason that many family physicians play an important role in the communities in which they live, sometimes even building up a medical practice in needy areas from scratch.